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Greer Grimsley

Bass-Baritone

American Bass-Baritone Greer Grimsley continues to fascinate critics in his prolific career. Grimsley is internationally recognized as an outstanding singing actor and one of the most prominent Wagnerian singers of our day.  Continuing his reign as a leading interpreter of the god Wotan, he recently sang the eminent role for the Metropolitan Opera’s Ring Cycle in Robert Lepage’s landmark production in the spring of 2013, directly followed by Stephen Wadsworth’s production for Seattle Opera, his 3rd complete Cycle for the company in the last decade. The Huffington Post exclaimed: “Grimsley commanded the stage in ‘Das Rheingold’ and ‘Die Walkure’ with his wide-ranging and handsome voice, and equally so in ‘Siegfried.’ He was fresh and powerful in all that he did. He sings…well…like a God… The world has waited for a very long time for a Wotan who can sing without barking or rasping, and he has arrived.”

 

Sep
2014

Sep-20
to
Sep-28
La fanciulla del West
Jack Rance
Minnesota Opera
Minneaspolis, MN
Oct
2014

Oct-30
to
Nov-08
Salome
Jochanaan
Dallas Opera
Dallas, TX
Jan
2015

Jan-10
to
Jan-24
Tosca
Scarpia
Seattle Opera
Seattle, WA
Mar
2015

Mar-11
to
Mar-23
Siegfried
Wotan
Gran Teatre del Liceu
Barcelona, Spain
Apr
2015

Apr-25
to
May-03
Sweeney Todd
Sweeney
Vancouver Opera
Vancouver, BC
Jun
2015

Jun-04
to
Jun-06
Samson et Dalila
High Priest
Atlanta Symphony
Atlanta, GA
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…singing was a sumptuous outpouring…
 Der fliegende Holländer- “But central to the success of any Dutchman production is the Dutchman himself. In this role, Greer Grimsley, who is a Seattle Opera favorite but whom I was encountering for the first time, covered himself with glory. A handsome man, slim of build, he looked the part, and his singing was a sumptuous outpouring of bass-baritone sound, molded with style and sensitivity. Indeed, the long section of Act II leading up to his understanding with Senta was as beautiful and as profoundly expressive as any performance of it I can recall hearing..” Seen and Heard
…sumptuously beautiful voice…
 Das Rheingold in concert- “Dominating the proceedings were the Wotan of Greer Grimsley and the Alberich of Richard Paul Fink; a well-matched, vicious pair. Grimsley projected iron power with a sumptuously beautiful voice, smooth as silk, precise of text.” -Huffington Post
…he sings like a god…
Der Ring des Niblungen - “No amount of cynicism can mask the fact that there are not many Wotans out there today capable of singing a full Ring cycle with anything approaching adequacy. It was, therefore, a pleasure to hear Greer Grimsley first assay the role in Seattle in 2005, and what was then a promising Wotan has now become The Genuine Article in all of its splendor and glory. He acts as about as well as a Wotan can act, but he sings…well…like a God. The role lies in the heart of his vocal range, and he sings with a rare combination of power and suavity. The world has waited for a very long time for a Wotan who can sing without barking or rasping, and he has arrived.” -Huffington Post
…wide-ranging and handsome voice…
Der Ring des Niblungen“Grimsley commanded the stage in ‘Das Rheingold’ and ‘Die Walkure’ with his wide-ranging and handsome voice, and equally so in ‘Siegfried.’ He was fresh and powerful in all that he did.” -Huffington Post
…baritone range and bass coloration…
Tristan und Isolde - “Greer Grimsley was ideal as a deeply caring Kurwenal, with his George London-like fusion of baritone range and bass coloration.” -Opera News
…a terrific voice…
Tosca - “As Scarpia, American bass-baritone Greer Grimsleyoutshone everybody else in the cast — not hard to do when you’ve got a terrific voice and you’re playing opera’s charming cad of cads.” Opera News
…Greer Grimsley is a force of nature…
 Macbeth “Greer Grimsley is a force of nature; his bass-baritone, dark and sinewy, is tactile. The man may earn his keep singing Wagner, but he knows how to squeeze import from an Italian vowel. He tempers the natural authority of his instrument to enact his character’s vulnerability. And he hints, poignantly, at an uncorrupted Macbeth that might have been.” Minneapolis Star-Tribune 
…powerful force during every scene…
La fanciulla del West“Greer Grimsley’s Jack Rance… is a palpable, powerful force during every scene.  Tall, commanding, and dark- voiced, Grimsley projects a remarkable blend of cynicism, honor, passion, and a devil-may-care attitude about life and death.  He ignites the second act, in which three principals meet in Minnie’s cabin; his declaration to Minnie that he means to have her is accompanied by body language that would have a gal quaking in her cowgirl boots.” -Seattle Times
…phenomenal…
 Faust - “Vocally, he matched that power note for note. With a deep resonance and rounded warm tone – full of both strength and delicate nuance – Grimsley was phenomenal. As an actor, he never allowed the seductive charm of Mephistopheles to turn to caricature. Indeed, by the time he confronts and damns Marguerite in the church, he was chillingly frighteninged.” -The Times-Picayune
Composer Opera Role
Bartok Bluebeard’s Castle Title role
Beethoven Fidelio Don Pizarro
Berg Wozzeck Doktor
Bizet Carmen Escamillo
Britten Peter Grimes Captain Balstrode
Billy Budd Claggart
Brook La tragédie de Carmen Escamillo
Floyd Susannah Olin Blitch
Gounod Faust Méphistophélès
Lieberson Ashoka’s Dream Canyka
Marschner Die Templer und die Juden Richard Lionheart
Offenbach Les contes d’Hoffmann Lindorf, Coppélius, Miracle, Dappertuto
Puccini Tosca Scarpia
La fanciulla del West Jack Rance
Saint-Saëns Samson et Dalila Le Grand-Prêtre de Dagon
Sondheim Sweeney Todd Sweeney Todd
Strauss Arabella Mandryka
Elektra Orest
Salome Jochanaan
Verdi Aïda Amonasro
Macbeth Title role
Il trovatore Conte de Luna
Wagner Der fliegende Holländer Title role
Lohengrin Telramund
Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg Hans Sachs
Parsifal Amphortas
Das Rheingold Wotan
Tristan und Isolde König Marke, Kurwenal
Die Walküre Wotan
Siegfried Wanderer
Weill Aufstieg und Fall der Stadt Mahagonny Dreieinigkeitsmoses
Zemlinsky A Florentine Tragedy Simone
Der Zwerg Don Estoban
Composer Work  
Bach Magnificat
St. John Passion
Beethoven Ninth Symphony
Berlioz La damnation de Faust
Brahms Requiem
Haydn Creation
Mahler Symphony No. 8
Mozart Mass in C Minor
Missa Solemnis
Rossini Stabat Mater
Schubert Mass in G
Verdi Requiem
American Bass-Baritone Greer Grimsley continues to fascinate critics in his prolific career. Opera News wrote: “Greer Grimsley outshone everybody else in the cast — not hard to do when you’ve got a terrific voice,” and “Greer Grimsley was ideal as a deeply caring Kurwenal, with his George London-like fusion of baritone range and bass coloration.”

Grimsley is internationally recognized as an outstanding singing actor and one of the most prominent Wagnerian singers of our day.  Continuing his reign as a leading interpreter of the god Wotan, he recently sang the eminent role for the Metropolitan Opera’s Ring Cycle in Robert Lepage’s landmark production in the spring of 2013, directly followed by Stephen Wadsworth’s production for Seattle Opera, his 3rd complete Cycle for the company in the last decade. The Huffington Post exclaimed: “Grimsley commanded the stage in ‘Das Rheingold’ and ‘Die Walkure’ with his wide-ranging and handsome voice, and equally so in ‘Siegfried.’ He was fresh and powerful in all that he did. He sings…well…like a God… The world has waited for a very long time for a Wotan who can sing without barking or rasping, and he has arrived.”

After performing the role of Jochanaan in Salome with San Francisco Opera, San Diego Opera, Santa Fe Opera, and Vancouver Opera, Grimsley is excited to be making his Dallas Opera début this season with Deborah Voigt in the title role. The San Francisco Chronicle exclaimed: “Bass-baritone Greer Grimsley was a thunderous and dramatically compelling Jochanaan. Grimsley invested the part with rhetorical strength and an air of moral solidity – the perfect antithesis to Salome’s eroticized jitters.” Other engagements this season include Jack Rance in La fanciulla del West with Minnesota Opera, a return to Seattle Opera as Scarpia in Tosca, the High Priest in Samson et Dalilah with Atlanta Symphony, and his long awaited début as the sadistically demonic barber Sweeney Todd for Vancouver Opera.  With appearances booked through 2017, Mr. Grimsley will make returns to the Metropolitan Opera, New National Theatre Tokyo, Gran Teatre del Liceu, San Francisco Opera, Seattle Opera, San Diego Opera, as well as a début with the Ravinia Festival.

His reputation as a leading interpreter of Wagner’s work was earned through a series of critically acclaimed performances in the repertoire at a diverse group of international opera companies: Wotan in Die Walküre and Das Rheingold at Deutsche Oper Berlin, Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona, and Tokyo’s Nikikai Opera Foundation; and in the entirety of Der Ring des Nibelungen with the Teatro La Fenice di Venezia, Oper Köln, on tour in Shanghai, The Metropolitan Opera and Seattle Opera;his other signature role as the terrifying Der Fliegende Holländer with performances at Deutsche Oper Berlin, at the Teatro Comunale di Bologna under Maestro Gatti’s baton, with Opéra national de Lorraine in Nancy, France, with San Francisco Opera, Seattle Opera, Pittsburgh Opera, Opera Lyra Ottawa, and in Lithuania; Telramund in Lohengrin with the Metropolitan Opera, Royal Danish Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, and Seattle Opera; Kurwenal in Tristan und Isolde with the Prague National Theatre, the Royal Danish Opera, Opera de Bellas Artes in Mexico, Lyric Opera of Chicago, and Seattle Opera; and finally Amfortas in Parsifal with the Metropolitan Opera.  He will make his début as Hans Sachs in Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, the final of Wagner’s Romanticised Menin 2015.

International engagements also include Scarpia in Tosca at the Oper der Stadt Köln, at the Deutsche Oper Berlin, The Norwegian National Opera in Oslo, and at the Hyogo Performing Arts Center in Japan; Jokanaan in Salome with the Deutsche Oper Berlin, Aarhus-Den Jyske Opera in Denmark, the Scottish Opera, and the Opera de Bellas Artes in Mexico; Mephistopheles in Faust inOviedo, Spain; Mandryka in Arabella with the Royal Danish Opera; Don Pizarro in Fidelio with the Scottish Opera as well as the Portuguese National Opera São Carlos;Jack Rance in La Fanciulla del West and the title role in Bluebeard’s Castle with L’Opera de Montreal; the title role in Don Giovanni and Scarpia in Tosca with the Stadttheater Basel in Switzerland; the Villains in Les Contes d’Hoffmann with New Israeli Opera; and Amonasro in Aïda with Opera de Caracas in Venezuela.

In North America his performances have also included Captain Balstrode in Peter Grimes, Escamillo in Carmen, Jochanaan in Salome,and Scarpia in Tosca with The Metropolitan Opera;   Canyka in the world prèmiere of Ashoka’s Dream with Santa Fe Opera Richard Lionheart in Marschner’s Der Templer und Die Juden with the Wexford Festival; Scarpia in Tosca with Seattle Opera, San Diego Opera, Opéra de Montréal, Portland Opera, Pittsburgh Opera, and Opera Colorado; Méphistophélès in Faust at the San Diego Opera, New Orleans Opera, and in a new production with Arizona Opera; Don Pizarro in Fidelio with Santa Fe Opera, Seattle Opera, and Portland Opera; Jack Rance in La fanciulla del West with Seattle Opera; the title role of Macbeth with Minnesota Opera, Vancouver Opera, and Opera Lyra Ottawa; Amonasro in Aïda with Portland Opera; and Claggart in Billy Budd with Pittsburgh Opera, and most recently, in his Los Angeles Opera début.

Lauded for his incredible performances of symphonic repertoire, Mr. Grimsley is in high demand as a concert artist. He made his New York Philharmonic début as Don Pizzaro in Fidelio with conductor Kurt Masur at the inaugural season of the Lincoln Center Festival.  Additional concert engagements include Verdi’s Requiem with the Atlanta Symphony at Carnegie Hall; Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with the Seattle Symphony and San Antonio Symphony; the High Priest in Samson et Dalila with Washington Concert Opera; Don Pizzarro in Fidelio with the Saint Louis Symphony;and Scarpia in Tosca with Deborah Voigt and the Minnesota Orchestra.

Mr. Grimsley first came to international attention as Escamillo in the Peter Brook production of La tragédie de Carmen, which he subsequently performed in venues around the world, including his Italian débuts at the Festival dei Due Mondi in Spoleto and the Teatro Comunale di Bologna. He also performed Escamillo in Bizet’s Carmen in over 15 productions throughout the world.

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